Picture this awful scenario: A person has been arrested. Now they need to remember the name of a lawyer, quickly, while they’re on that one phone call with Aunt Suzie. They’re crying something awful, but they know that one attorney in town everyone knows to call. They can even see her website address in their mind. It’s on the tip of their tongue … but impossible recall under such duress. If only that attorney had known how to find short domain names!
Even if these were normal circumstances, would your potential clients be able to remember a super-long web address? Probably not. That, my lawyer friends, is why you should consider getting a short domain for your law practice.
What is a short domain, anyway?
At a basic level, a short domain name is one that has less than, say, a dozen letters or numbers — short enough for people to remember easily. Think Legal Zoom, on the web at legalzoom.com. It’s short and easy to remember.
Now, let’s apply this rule to your law firm. If the name of your firm is long and/or hard to spell, it likely will be hard for people to remember. And if they do remember it, there’s a good chance they’ll misspell it when they type it into a web browser.
Here are 10 rules to remember when you’re choosing a domain.
Could your firm benefit from a short domain?
I’ll bet the answer to this is a heck yes! With all of the amazing domain extensions available now — including .attorney, .lawyer and .legal — there couldn’t be a better time to snag a swanky new address for your law firm. I can see it now:
ABCDivorce.attorney — For divorce lawyers
Blog.lawyer — For a lawyer that mainly works with bloggers
TopDoc.legal — For malpractice suits
YourSports.lawyer — For lawyers who work with athletes
The bottom line is that if your virtual law firm has a short domain, it’s more likely people who need you will remember how to find you when that need arises.
How to find short domain names
To protect your brand online, take the extra step of registering at least one additional domain with the .attorney, .legal or .lawyer extension. You can forward that domain name to your primary web address. If you’re not able to find a short and memorable .com domain name you like, go with one of the new legal-specific domain extensions.
These newer domain extensions work especially well for attorneys whose business names end in one of those words, like legal. By putting part of your business name to the right of the dot, using the extension, you give potential clients an easier-to-remember web address.
Getting extra fancy with domain hacks
What is a domain hack? No, it’s not a cyber criminal. Wikipedia’s definition sums it up best:
“A domain hack is a domain name that suggests a word, phrase, or name when concatenating two or more adjacent levels of that domain. For example, “bir.ds” and “examp.le”, using the fictitious country-code domains .ds and .le, suggest the word birds and example respectively.”
How can you get one of these for your law firm? You could purchase a domain that uses a two-letter country code to make a complete word. Not feeling too clever, but still want a domain hack for yourself? I won’t even charge you by the hour for this sweet tip! There’s a free tool that will help you design an awesome domain hack of your very own.
Since this article is all about helping lawyers, we’d be remiss if we didn’t warn you that not all country code domain names are open for general registration. It’s also important to note that some are restricted to people who live in specified geographic areas.
Keep it simple, and memorable
I hope that I’ve driven home the point that you should seriously consider how to find short domain names. The difference between success and your competitors getting all the business could be how easy it is to remember your web address. I won’t say it’s the only factor in play because I don’t want to get sued here. (Cough, cough, wink, wink!) However, I do know a bit about marketing, and I want to see you succeed!
So, if you have a domain that is way too long for even you to remember, consider taking my advice on how to find short domain names.
Also published on Medium.